Not in My Backyard (Nimby)

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The so-called NIMBY (not in my backyard) syndrome reflects the propensity of local citizens and officials to insist on siting unwanted but necessary facilities anywhere but in their own community. The term has gained currency in relation to the siting of facilities that have a potential for adverse impacts on the environment, such as municipal waste incinerators and hazardous waste facilities. But it is equally applicable to the siting of prisons, methadone clinics, and psychiatric halfway houses all of which are often subject to intense local opposition. For all of these examples, the best approach to the problem is that of primary prevention, which would lessen the need for such facilities. Success in siting an unwanted but needed facility requires that authorities fully involve the public with openness and integrity in all aspects of the planning process.

Bernard D. Goldstein

(see also: Community Health; Nuclear Waste; Nuisance Abatement )


Chess, C. (2000). "Evaluating Environmental Public Participation: Methodological Questions." Journal of Environmental Planning and Management 43(6):769784.